måndag 1 oktober 2012

DIY RS232 shield for the Olimex E407

My first hardware project with the E407 was to create an RS232 shield (they can be bought if you don't want to build it yourself). I used olimed own arduino proto shield. I happened to have a Maxim 232 driver circuit in my drawer, and also the five 1uF electrolytic capacitors needed to create this board.

First of all I discovered that the Olimex proto shield doesn't fit the board very well. I had to grind off one of the corners to make it fit with the power supply capacitors on the E407 board. A regular proto shield won't fit better... it seems like the capacitors aren't too well placed on the E407 board :-/

Since I am not very experienced in programming the STM32 processor I had to verify the construction with an AVR I had laying around and it seemed to work fine. I couldn't make it work with the E407 though.

I found out that the source I had downloaded from ST's site is designed for the Discovery board which has an 8 MHz external clock source. The E407 has a 12MHz clock. I had to generate a new system file with ST's excel tool. The patch can be found here.

I then compiled the example from Elias electronics blog, which seemed to work fine.

Good luck!